Compass Public Programme 2019

Happiness, Loneliness and Animals: Reflections from Participants of Compass Festival 2018. 

We are delighted to announce the release of Happiness, Loneliness and Animals written by Chris O'Connor. This publication documents the encounters and experiences of those who engaged with the festival in 2018. We can't wait to hear your thoughts.

You can read the publication here. 


Compass Festival 2018 was supported by Arts Council England, Leeds City Council, Leeds BID and Leeds Beckett University. ‘Happiness, Loneliness and Animals: Reflections from Participants of Compass Festival 2018’ was written by Chris O’Connor and supported by Live Art UK

Maya Chowdhry - What's Eating Reality? 


This Digital Arts and Food Justice Forum, What's Eating Reality?, was commissioned by Compass and presented in partnership with Leeds International Festival.  

'What’s your relationship with coffee and sugar? How much do you know about those saccharine grains and bitter grounds you reach for every morning? This forum explores how digital art can be used to examine issues around food justice. It will activate audiences, and question whether using creative projects to highlight inequality in the global food system can lead to changes in policy and public opinion, with the intent to move towards producing a fairer food system for all. The event features food justice campaigners, academics, technologists, culinary artists and digital artists, all examining the use of art as a mechanism for inspiring, entertaining and informing audiences.

The evening will feature two short immersive works for smartphone by artist Maya Chowdhry which investigate our relationship with coffee and sugar. On arrival, attendees will receive an ethically-sourced drink and snack prepared by Liverpool based chefs FoodSketz.'

Our special guests included Viv Taylor: Head of Product at Olio; Behla Hutchinson: Coordinator at Hyde Park Source, and Megan Blake: Senior Lecturer in Geography at the University of Sheffield and author of the blog GeoFoodie. 

Artist Residencies 

Throughout 2019, Compass will be inviting 5 artists and artist groups from across the UK and Europe to Leeds for artist residencies. Embedding themselves in the daily life of the city, the artists will be meeting locals, groups and organisations whilst also enjoying studio time to develop their latest ambitious projects. Each residency will have a public sharing of some kind so that you can see what they have been up to. Names to be announced very soon. 

Artist Development Bursaries 

In 2019 we will announce four bursary awards for artists based in West Yorkshire who have an emerging interested in developing a socially engaged or interactive arts practice. Offering a mix of cash, consultancy and contact with the artists taking part in our 2019 residency programme, this scheme focuses our commitment on retaining and developing live art practice across Leeds and Yorkshire. More details to be announced very soon.

Compass Festival 2018 Publication

In 2019 we will be launching a new publication featuring reflections on Compass Festival 2018 from the people who took part by local writer Chris O'Connor. More details soon.